Labour force swells: Jamaica records lowest unemployment levels yet

The Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) is reporting that the country’s unemployment rate dropped a further 1.5 percentage points to 7.2 per cent in October 2019, when compared to the same period in 2018.

STATIN further noted that in the 12-month review period there was an increase in the number of Jamaicans within the labour force than those outside the sector.

What’s more, women, particularly those employed in service sector industry groups, accounted for the largest jump among the genders – doubling that for their male counterparts.

“The employed labour force for October 2019 was 1,248,400 [Jamaicans], which was 29,200 (2.4%) larger than in October 2018. The increase in employment for females was nearly twice that of males. The number of employed males increased by 10,600 to 682,800 and employed females by 18,600 to 565,600,” STATIN indicated.

“Over the same twelve months, there was a reduction in the number of persons outside the labour force and an increase in the labour force,” the government agency added.

In January 2019, STATIN reported that the country’s unemployment rate falling to a new record low of 8.4 per cent – the lowest in 50 years.